People loves them some Yoko (except a few Beatles fans). Her work is so accessible any lay man can enjoy it…no coded imagery, difficult theory, or overindulgent narcissism. Walking into the Serpentine Gallery in London’s Hyde Park, I was excited to see her work. I’m a fan, but a part of me hates it too. It’s all in admitted jealousy. Its just so simple…why didn’t I think of it. Actually, I feel its a bit too simple sometimes and borders on art school 101. The first piece walking in was WWII helmets hanging upside down from the ceiling with pieces of a cloud puzzle. My eyes rolled. Then on to 3 mounds of dirt labeled “Country 1″, “Country 2″, “Country 3″. Oh dear, the cheese factor was at code red. Ok, I told myself not to be a little judgmental art snob bitch and take the message and accept it as sincere. Then I was able to start enjoying the Yokoness of it all; gentle, honest & even thought provoking. She does create a lot of ease and enjoyment in her uncomplicated approach. My greatest disappointment was her video of John Lennon. Lady, I know he was your husband who got murdered but that was decades ago..why you still holding on? My guess is to bring in visitors & sell some catalogs…it just felt so exploitative. She is also still showing her “cut” video. It is her best work. It’s a performance where the audience cuts pieces of her clothes off until its so painful to watch someone actually get down to her panties and bra and the assholes still keep cutting. But it’s from 1964(or 65), and then she even re-staged it in 2003, and she’s still showing it! Is this gallery show was a mini retrospective and I am just oblivious to it? The piece of the show that is her newest big production is the “Smiles Film”. She says her “ultimate goal” in film-making to to create a film with a smile of every person in the world. Now before you do the eye roll, just think how sweet of a gesture it is to do this. I mean, if she did this in my art school she would be ripped to shreds in critique class; but I think it’s cute. Not all art has to be complicated & super cerebral, so I participated. First there’s a video with Yoko telling you about the project in her little cute hat and glasses….she does have a feeling of having become a caricature of herself. After the video you could sit down and do a snap shot in a make shift booth and then you got a pin to put on your shirt. I opted not to get the pin because it was just getting too cutesy-artsy-fartsy for me. The annoying thing is that I got a number to put into Flickr to download my photo but it doesn’t work. I wanted to post the pic in this blog, instead I’ll post my official Smile-number. I have to give it to the ol’ girl Ono, she packed the house and everyone had a fun time, as did I once I stopped trying to critique everything. Yoko gets a smiling star.